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MAY AND THE BEAUTY OF BALLERINO

Since Adele I don’t believe I have heard the depth of a voice like that of May. She brings an ambience of darkness – light and the feeling that something really amazing is about to happen. It has been a blessing to work with her since meeting in New York and we are so pleased to bring you her latest offering ‘Ballerino’

Thank you May – it ‘s beautiful.

M A Y 

Ballerino is filled with Parisian undertones – please share how this resonates within you

Firstly, I love French music. The romance and melancholy of artists like Edith Piaf and Jacque Brel resonates with me… I have always found inspiration in music with great depth and beauty like theirs.

For this song in particular – A few years ago I lived in Paris and this past July I returned for the first time. The visit brought back many memories and took my mind back to a time when I was younger and more naive. It was during this reflection that I was inspired to begin writing ‘Ballerino.’

With similarities to both the works of Nina Simone and Leonard Cohen can you tell us about these influences

Leonard Cohen is my favorite artist. I listen to his records constantly and was introduced to his music by my mother. Alongside his beautiful music, I admire his lyrics and poetry.

Whilst recording ‘Ballerino’, (which was live) I took myself to a place where I imagined Nina Simone would be back in the day – In an underground, smoke filled jazz club. I wanted the song to sound heartfelt and authentic.

With 2016 holding some heavy moments for all – did it have an affect on your song writing

2016 was a very emotional year for so many of us worldwide, and also personally for me as I very sadly lost my father in November. I wanted to enter into 2017 with a message of love, acceptance and hope.

Regarding my songwriting, I am inspired by life and whether that be something that brings me joy or complete despair, I find great comfort in putting my emotions into song.

a may music

What can you tell us about the making of this beautiful video Ballerino

I originally had the idea to film a more abstract and lyrical piece with a music box ballerina twirling in slow-motion. Then I met with my friend, director Meredith Truax, who quite literally brought my idea to life and introduced me to the wonderful dancer, Shay Bares. Shay was incredibly moved by the song, and choreographed his dance especially for the video. His performance was exquisite and from the moment he stepped into the spotlight and in front of the camera I knew it was going to be something special. I am so thankful for the finished product, and to have had the opportunity to collaborate with such talented people.

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Fashionably Late

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Is your brand looking to tell a story? We transpire the everyday dreamer.

Romance is core and it is here we light up the style of heart.

Contact us HERE to film a Look Book.

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Below is a couple shots from our latest shoot for Hollister Paris Ft. Spain’s Pablo Corzo

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Lay Low with Lou Doillon

I knew I was going to like Lou Doillon’s LP, ‘Lay Low’ from the moment her fingers delicately set the mood from the sound of the keys in opening track, ‘Left Behind.’

It is apparent that we have been left behind at Fresh Independence because we were not familiar with the success of Parisian Lou’s previous LP, ‘Places’ selling over three-hundred thousand copies worldwide.

LAY LOW AVAILABLE NOW

I don’t dare to compare, but upon first thought, it was a refreshing version of Adele meets Regina Spektor and Sia.

The ambience of the mind provokes a dim room overlooking the city lights with a glass of wine as the record player cues your new favourite album of repetitive measure.

Lou Dillon is a free flowing taste of sultry jazz and sweet afterthoughts.

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Jesse Malin remembers Nick Alexander- ‘Merch Guy’ at Paris Attacks

Nick Alexander

I first heard about the attacks in Paris in a message that a friend had sent me late that Friday. We had no idea of the severity, but we were both immediately very shaken up. It was a band that I have known for years, the Eagles of Death Metal – a great group and a really special bunch of guys. We did a festival together in Spain a few months ago. I have also played that very venue, the Bataclan- a room with a lot of great history and character.

  I began reaching out to the band and people who knew them, but received no reply. I sat in my apartment with a sick feeling in my stomach. Finally, more news came on that people in the crowd had been shot, some were being held hostage, but the band had made it out. I had a meeting to go to but couldn’t seem to function or focus. Next I heard, French police had stormed the venue and shot one of the assassins, while the others had blown themselves apart. It was clear now that this was a planned attack of terror, and, most likely, ISIS was responsible.

  I received another message saying that the merch person had been killed. Their identity was unknown but I couldn’t stop thinking about it. The numbers of casualties were piling up, along with words of other attacks throughout Paris. I couldn’t even imagine the horror of these people were experiencing- to be at a show on a Friday night, enjoying music in the safety of the crowd. As much as I tried to distract my self and watch a movie, but couldn’t get this unidentified merch person out of my mind.

  I finally fell asleep and awoke the next morning to an email from a friend in Finland. The person selling merch was Nick Alexander. The words hit me like a knife through my heart. Nick was a bright light, a sweet and upbeat rock & roll soul. We took him on his first tour of Europe when he was starting out, and did at least four very memorable runs together through Europe. He always looked like a star, worked like a pro, and gave all of his heart to everyone he was involved with. As many of you know, the road crew are the first ones in and the last ones out. They are the blood and guts and backbone to every show.

  I’ve said many times before that touring gives you a chance to build your own private pirate ship, surround yourself with the people you believe in. You can create a small world of your own on that bus (or van) and travel around the globe. The stage is the place where the songs come alive under the lights and through the speakers. The merch table is a place where fans and artists connect on a personal level. Nick knew how to talk to people and made friends everywhere he went. I would stand next to him on many nights- greeting our fans, asking them what they thought of the gig, what they’re listening to, signing stuff, and toasting to our heroes and our dreams. As much as I like to perform, I’m still a fan at heart and always will be.

  Nick Alexander died in the line of duty, at his post, living life on his own terms. He was loved by so many around the world. I last saw Nick at the Roundhouse in London when I was opening for the Replacements. Not only was I a bit nervous that day, but I was also very lost trying to find the back entrance of the venue. I wandered around in circles with my bags and guitar, in a true Spinal Tap moment. Then suddenly I heard, “Hey Jesse,” and out of the five o’clock light popped Nick with a warm smile, as if no time had passed between us. He quickly walked me into the venue and within minutes I was on the stage and ready to check.

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